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News & Press: E-News

November 2018 Newsletter

Thursday, November 15, 2018  
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FAI Newsletter | November 2018
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Photo courtesy of The KCMO Office of Culture and Creative Services

New Office Space

At 10:00 am on November 8th, following a performance by artist Calvin Arsenia and comments by Kansas City's Mayor Sly James, FAI staff cut the ribbon to open its new office and announced its seven-year lease and commitment to the city. Joining staff for the event were members of the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, area developers, artists, cultural sector leaders, media partners, and FAI's funders, donors, and volunteers.
Located at 601 Avenida Cesar E Chavez, FAI's new office sits at the western end of the Crossroads Arts District and the eastern end of the historic and thriving Westside neighborhood. The new space brings FAI closer to the hub of the arts community in Kansas City, standing only a few blocks away from prominent performing centers and advocacy organizations.
Mayor James, who has been a constant vocal supporter of FAI, quoted the Blues line, "You never miss the water till the well runs dry," and stated his commitment prioritizing the arts. He called on city leaders to support FAI's future endeavors after acknowledging the community-wide impact of the organization.
FAI Board Secretary and Executive Director of the Woody Guthrie Center, Deana McCloud, represented FAI's Board of Directors and spoke from the organization's global perspective in valuing Kansas City as the ideal location for continued growth.
Executive Director Aengus Finnan thanked the many supporters gathered, highlighted the fact the office will be presenting listening room Finest Folk concerts, and announced that FAI's conference will return to Kansas City in 2021, 2022, and 2024 (bringing with it a combined total economic impact of $15 million dollars - as determined by Visit KC).
Affirming Our Values
FAI is committed to its values of diversity and inclusion and opposes all forms of harassment and discrimination. Public statements and pledges, a review of internal processes, and training for staff, board, and community are all steps we intentionally take to ensure the establishment of a safe and welcoming environment for all people.
If incidents of harassment or discrimination do occur at any FAI event or any music industry event, festival, or venue, we encourage our community to speak up.
In the last year, FAI joined the PRS Foundation's Keychange initiative to promote gender equity on our stages and across the international music industry, and we are proud to have met the 2022 Keychange goal for our 2018 conference. Going forward, we intend to reach parity across all FAI programming.

At the 2018 conference FAI partnered with the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault (MOCSA) and the DB Approach to provide a training at our CommUNITY Gathering entitled Addressing Harassment and Discrimination in the Music Industry. We also formally issued the "Committing to a Safe Music Community" pledge listed below:
"As a member of the music community, I pledge to create and uphold a safe environment for all, one that respects all national, geographic, cultural, ethnic, social, economic, gender, sexuality, orientation, mobility, and other forms of diversity. I reject harassment and discrimination of any kind. When I witness behavior that undermines or threatens the safety and security of any participant, I pledge to address this behavior as unacceptable. I will seek training to learn how to address these issues appropriately."
Business Accelerators Presented in Partnership with Berklee Online
Folk Alliance International is proud to announce the launch of three Business Accelerators, presented in partnership with Berklee Online, on Wednesday, February 13, 2019. These intensive day-long training sessions require paid registration in addition to conference registration.
Designed to build core skills for emerging professionals, there are three separate and concurrent accelerator programs for:
  • Agents, hosted by Val Denn.
  • Artist-entrepreneurs, hosted by Amanda Martinez, and sponsored by Bandzoogle and CD Baby.
  • Managers, hosted by Susan de Cartier.
Session topics might include goal setting and strategic career planning, legal issues, publishing and licensing, touring marketing and branding, budgeting and finances. Instructors and additional summit details will be announced in the new year.
For more information please visit our website and sign up below!
Enrollment is limited.
Programs run from 9 am - 4 pm at the Conference hotel (Fairmont Queen Elizabeth). Coffee and light breakfast is included. Lunch is on your own.

Accelerator attendees must also be registered for the Folk Alliance International conference.

Early bird rate of $75 ends Dec. 15, 2018.
Regular rate of $100 begins Dec 16, 2018.
Registration closes January 15, 2019.
FAI 2019 Global Summits
International Indigenous Music Summit
FAI is proud to host the world’s first International Indigenous Music Summit during its 31st conference in Montréal, Canada. The summit is on Thursday, February 14th from 10 am - 3 pm and is organized and facilitated by Indigenous artist and community leader ShoShona Kish.

The one-day summit is a gathering of Indigenous artists, knowledge keepers, and community builders
, along with key invited allies to discuss the most important issues facing the Indigenous music community. The summit coincides with the UN’s declaration of 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages.

Summit core areas of focus:
· Connect export-ready Indigenous artists with the global music community
· Create awareness, resources, opportunities, and sustainable pathways
· Build networks, relationships, and connections, and
· Discuss needs, challenges, solutions, and best practices
· Share strategies, recommendations, ideas, and concerns with the larger community
· Propose progressive change in both mainstream and Indigenous music industry
· Establish a forum for greater shared awareness of Indigenous cultural practice
· Celebrate the historic and ongoing global contributions of Indigenous music

The summit is open to Indigenous artists and Indigenous music industry representatives. If you are Indigenous and wish to attend the summit, or if you have questions about the summit,
please submit your information here. For more information contact
Ethnomusicology Summit
FAI is also proud to host an Ethnomusicology Summit during its 31st conference in Montréal, Canada. The summit is on Thursday, February 14th from 10 am - 1 pm and is organized and facilitated by SEM (the Society for Ethnomusicology) and Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.
The summit is an international gathering of Ethnomusicologists along with key invited musicologists, industry, and artists to critique the Idea of “World Music.”
Half a century after Robert Brown began offering world music classes at Wesleyan, thirty-seven years after Peter Gabriel’s launch of WOMAD, and almost twenty years after Steven Feld suggested scholars and music industry leaders alike should put the term to sleep with a “Sweet Lullaby” (Feld 2000), “world music” as a genre, a marketing category, and even as a concept is as lively as ever. While many academics and artists have expressed disdain for the term, critiquing it for reinforcing orientalist representations of the rest of the world for the sake of commerce, the term remains in use.*
This summit will bring together people with varying perspectives from research, practice, and artistry to consider the ways in which the idea of “world music” continues to be applied to artists by listeners and industry representatives. It’s an exciting and rare opportunity in which ethnomusicologists, musicians, and all those involved in the “folk music” cultural industry come together to critically discuss how concepts of “world music” and “folk music” bolster or hinder the musicians involved in their making. Perspectives from the realms of applied ethnomusicology and economic ethnomusicology are especially encouraged.
The summit is open to professionals working in the field of Ethnomusicology, in any capacity. If you wish to attend the summit, or if you have questions, please submit your information here. For more information contact
*Folk Alliance International ceased using the "world music" term in 2014 due to its roots in colonial ideology.
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More Must-Sees in Montréal!
We recently heard from Cécile Doo-Kingué about the best places in Montréal. In this segment of Montréal Favorites, we’ll get some pointers from Eli Levinson (who works alongside Deborah Cognet at Mundial Montréal) as he gives us his top picks in this dynamic city.
Eli Levinson is a producer/DJ/event organizer from Montréal. He splits his time working on communications for industry showcase Mundial Montréal, wearing many hats (production, communications, administration) with Stonetree Records, AfrotroniX and others, and organizing events in Montréal connecting roots and electronic music.
Favorite restaurant: Carib Delite on Parc avenue or Cosmos in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce

Favorite music venue: Groove Nation

Favorite neighborhood: The Plateau or Notre-Dame-de-Grâce

Favorite building: the abandoned St Ambroise Brewery next to the canal
Read more from Eli here!
Register for FAI 2019
Apply to Volunteer
Industry First-Timers can still Apply for a Scholarship
Save More with Folk Referral
Members can refer a first-timer and save money. You earn $50 towards your paid registration for each qualifying registrant who names you as their referral source.
Refer five first-timers and earn $250--that's a free conference registration!
Not a member yet? Become one now! Check out the details on this referral program here and SAVE on registration for this year's FAI conference.
Conference Hotel
Our host hotel, Fairmont the Queen Elizabeth, is nearly sold out. Once we reach capacity in the rooms reserved, there may be additional rooms available outside of the block. Please call the hotel directly to check availability.
FAI is in the process of arranging blocks at nearby hotels. Please check the website for updates.
FAI's discounted room rate is $189 CAD ($148 USD). Reserve your room, space is limited!*
*The hotel is sold out on some nights.
Non-Candian Conference Attendees
For ease of entry for non-Canadian attendees, FAI has gathered letters regarding the nature of the Conference. Please make sure to bring this letter from FAI and this letter from Canada Border Services Agency with you when crossing the border.
This is the perfect time for people to apply for Global Entry, a trusted traveler program that can save you hours by accessing expedited lines at Customs. More information and eligibility criteria can be found here.

NACC Chart Member Discount

FAI has negotiated a member discount of $50 a month for industry and $25 for artists for access to the North American College and Community (NACC) Folk Chart. Find more details and sign up here.
Ale Möller Folk Alliance International 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient
Lifetime Achievement Award Videos

Each year, FAI presents its Elaine Weissman Lifetime Achievement Awards to honor the cultural impact of legendary Living, Legacy, and Organizational/Academic folk music figures.

Visit our Awards page to access the full video archive of past honorees.
Social Media Shoutout

Wallis Bird, singer-songwriter and previous FAI Official Showcase artist was recently featured in a video shared on the official U2 social accounts. In the video, Wallis speaks to the pride she feels as an Irish musician having U2 represent her country globally. You can watch the full video here.

Attention Members! Do you have memorable news to share with us? Follow @FolkAlliance and tag us on social media and let us know about the notable moments in your career!

Please also follow Folk Alliance International on social media and tag us in your photos! #FolkAlliance #FAIMontreal

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